The host of International Experience Joseph Jorjoliani had an exciting guest last week,
Mr. Jack Myint. He is a future politician from the Republic of Burma (also known as Myanmar).
Mr. Myint is an undergraduate
student in his second year at Washington & Jefferson College,
majoring in Political Science and Economics with a Pre-Law track.
Mr. Myint shared many interesting facts about Burmese culture, politics,
and social life. His views on different issues are strong, passionate
and fact-based. Perhaps this charismatic sophomore will one day become
the leader of his country.
Joseph: Mr. Myint, I had not heard about Burma before I came here to
Washington & Jefferson College. Now, I know how to say one word in
Burmese: “minglaba,” which means “hello.” So, minglaba Mr. Myint! How
are you doing today?
Jack: I am doing well, thank you Joseph for inviting me to be a guest on
your show. It's truly a great honor.
Joseph: Thank you for finding some time in your busy schedule to come
by. Well, Jack, I know you were born and raised in Burma.So how did you
find out about W&J and what inspired you to study in the United
Jack: First of all, I would like to explain what was happening in Burma
when I decided that I want to come study in the United States. There was
a strong military regime in place and politics as a subject was banned
from our high school and university systems. A few months before I left,
the regime stepped down and a new administration came into place with a
promise to transition Burma into a democratic state. As you probably
know, that's the driving factor behind better trade and investment
relations with Burma and major western powers over the past couple of
years. So, yes it is a very hopeful time for the country but the fact of
the matter is, there's still a lot more to be done – rooting out
corruption in the bureaucracy, better promoting the educational and
health care standards, ridding of military presence (which currently
hold 25% of the seats) in parliament to name a few. I firmly believe the
education I receive and the network I accumulate over my time in the
U.S will give me the background necessary to go back to Burma and become
part of the changing political landscape and steadily developing
societal and economic stature of my country.
I applied to 28 colleges and universities, and Washington &
Jefferson College has always been on the top of my list. I chose W&J
based on its top-tier pre-law program and my interaction with members
of the faculty prior to my arrival.
Joseph: I know that Burma is not a wealthy country. Did you have enough
funds to attend W&J?
Jack: Right after I received a generous scholarship from the College, I
started seeking additional funding. I was fortunate to be selected as a
recipient of the Prospect Burma Scholarship, an educational trust set up
by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, the Nobel Peace Prize winner of Burma who is
also my personal idol, hero and source of inspiration. I also received
the Open Society Scholarship from the Soros Foundation.